Primary immunodeficiencies (PIDs) are caused by part of the body’s immune system failing and are usually inherited and incurable.
There are more than 80 conditions identified as primary immunodeficiencies, which leave patients with little or no defence from infections.
Health problems associated with PIDs include bronchitis, heart problems, pneumonia, skin disorders and arthritis.
The campaign, funded by the government-owned not-for-profit organisation Bio Products Laboratory, aims to ensure nurses and clinicians are aware of PIDs so patients do not go undiagnosed, risking serious illness, disability and even death.
Ruth Weldon, immunology nurse specialist Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, launched the campaign at the RCN Nursing Immunology and Allergy Nurses Group’s meeting in Brighton last week.
It aims to undertake the first ever patient survey looking at care and individual diagnosis of PIDs, building up a database of case reviews to assess referral patterns, treatments and lengths of hospital stays.
The campaign also aims to help support ENT, respiratory and health professionals diagnose PIDs and will next year research the cost to the health service using case review data. A website is under construction to provide further information about the campaign.